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4736Re: [carfree_cities] Why do people drive? (was: Digest Number 689)

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  • J.H. Crawford
    May 13, 2002
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      turpin replied:

      >--- In carfree_cities@y..., "J.H. Crawford" <mailbox@c...> wrote:
      >> To be maintained, a habituated behavior has to
      >> offer some reward. In the case of cars, I think
      >> it's the only time a great many Americans have to
      >> themselves.
      >
      >Maybe that is part of it. But I think you're missing
      >the simpler and more important fact: where and how
      >most people now live, driving is their fastest
      >commute to work.

      I have lost track of this thread. I think the sense of
      it was more, "why do people LIKE to drive." If that's
      the question, then I think my reply has some validity.

      >Let me use myself as an example. I purposely live
      >inside the city, partly because I prefer walking to
      >all other modes of getting around. The last two
      >places I worked were 3 miles and 4 miles from home,
      >and I either walked or took the bus. Alas, my
      >current client's office is out in the burbs -- too
      >far to walk. Sometimes I have bicycled, but it
      >takes 45 minutes, and one of my knees doesn't like
      >that much bicycling. Driving takes 10 to 15 minutes.
      >Maybe 20, if the freeway is jammed. So I usually
      >drive. The pay-off is obvious: an hour saved each
      >day.

      As long as the car is by far the best way to get
      somewhere, people will use it, and when I'm the
      USA, I use it a fair bit myself, as there is no
      practical alternative for many trips.

      >My bad? Maybe. But I don't view it as a moral
      >choice. While I disapprove the way America
      >subsidizes sprawl, and the kind of urban
      >architecture generated by that, I'm going to make
      >my personal choices based purely on the costs and
      >benefits that the resulting economic and urban
      >environment presents to me. And so will most
      >people. People's driving habits will not be
      >changed by massive persuasion. They will change
      >only when the economic and urban environments
      >present different options.

      And that's the nut of it--we have to offer those
      different alterntives.




      -- ### --

      J.H. Crawford Carfree Cities
      mailbox@... Carfree.com
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